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Specials in Blackpool, Wyre and Lancaster take the win!

Friday, November 3, 2023

Officers from the Special Constabulary have been celebrated at a recent awards ceremony. 

The event, held at Lancashire Constabulary Headquarters, was attended by Specials from across Lancashire and was opened by Chief Constable Chris Rowley. 

Special Constables are volunteer police officers who come from all walks of life, bringing a vast range of skills and experience. They have the same powers of arrest as regular officers and dedicate at least 16 hours a month to policing alongside their work and family commitments.

Five officers from West Division were awarded on the night.

Student Officer of the Year – Special Constable Seamus, Blackpool – Winner.

The Student Officer of the Year award recognises officers who have recently joined the Special Constabulary and are already contributing greatly and supporting the policing teams in their local areas. 

Seamus is based at Blackpool, and has already volunteered 600 hours since joining.

He often volunteers to assist with police constables throughout Blackpool. He was commended for his work on an operation during the night, in plain clothes, to assist in solving ongoing issues with an individual breaking into vehicles. Using his stop and search powers a proactive stop helped link a prolific burglar to recent incidents and is likely to has disrupted plans for the night, as well as gaining valuable intel.

Also as an active member of the Safer Roads Team, Seamus is consistently building his confidence and knowledge.

He is described as an asset to West Division and is a real credit to the Special Constabulary in Lancashire.

Supervisor of the Year – Special Inspector David, Wyre and Lancaster Boroughs – Winner.

This category recognises Supervisors who have shown consistency in supporting their teams, whilst also contributing to policing in their communities.

David joined the Special Constabulary in January 2014 and has been a Supervisor since 2015. He currently leads and supports a team of 12 Specials, including three Special Sergeants. He does this in addition to working a very demanding Supervisory role in Contact Management at Lancashire Police Headquarters, Hutton.

He has assisted local policing in Lancaster over a number of years and at a large variety of events, such as Halloween and the Euro’s football patrol. However, the main reason for his nomination is for his engagement, experience, and management of the Specials at Highest Point Festival this year and in recent years. 

He is described as approachable, calm, and professional.

Outstanding Achievement award – Special Inspector Sonya, Blackpool.

This award recognises an officer who has consistently contributed to the Special Constabulary throughout their service.

Sonya joined the specials in 2007, was posted to Blackpool and became a Special Supervisor four years later. She often leads speed enforcement operations, and actively supports immediate response teams. She has also lead teams for some major events for the Division such as the National Firework Championships, Lytham Festival, Blackpool Illumination Switch On, Ride the Lights and Blackpool Pride.

She is always on hand to support her colleagues and arranges inductions for new starters at Blackpool. She volunteers to take them out on their initial duties, so that they can find their feet.

Even with a demanding life outside of the police, Sonya’s impact goes well beyond her team. Her colleagues say she is always on the end of a phone call or email, and she encourages and motivates her team through her own passion.

Special Recognition award – Safer Roads Team.

Roads across Lancashire are policed by the special operations department. They deal with traffic collisions, deaths and support force operations using their specialist roads policing skills. The team also provide proactive and enforcement activities to prevent road collisions injuries and deaths.

The Special Constabulary Safer Roads Team was formed in 2019 to support the work of police officers in this area. To perform this function, the team were given specialist training to deal with road traffic related matters.

The team has contributed 1,454 hours in the past year alone and have supported operations such as drink drive campaigns and events such as the Isle of Man TT.

Two officers from West Division, Special Sergeant Jake and Special Inspector David, were commended for their contribution and dedication to the team.

Celebrating a service milestone.

Special Sergeant Darryl was also awarded a certificate to commemorate his five years’ service milestone.

Chief Superintendent Karen Edwards, Divisional Commander of West Division, said: “I am extremely proud of all our Specials who go beyond the call of duty to keep our communities safe.

“I would like to say a huge congratulations to our worthy West Division winners. They have shown dedication to their communities through their volunteering, in what is a very demanding job.

“I look forward to more successes in the future.”